Algae Blooms, HABs and Toxic Algae – A health risk to humans and animals


Algae blooms, HABs and toxic algae are affecting waterways and waterbodies in 50 states and globally. They affect fishing, swimming, tourism, real estate values and are a health risk to humans and animals. They are an increasing threat to lakes, reservoirs and drinking water. They thrive in nitrogen and phosphorus-rich environments. As they increase every year, chronic toxins are produced causing lake and beach closures and associated degradation of property values. Airborne toxins can be detected for up to a mile away from impacted water bodies affecting coastal and golf communities.

After decades of research, testing and monitoring, the National Algae Association receives requests from state representatives, counties, algae task forces, lake, bay, coastal management and homeowner’s associations looking for real solutions. They are only interested in technologies proven outside the lab, scalable and economically feasible claiming decades of research, testing and monitoring alone have not fixed any of these devastating water quality problems. 

Algae blooms and HAB problems are devastating canals, lakes, marinas, coastlines and reservoirs. Join nutrient stewardship farmers and algae bloom/remediation technologies as they combat the worsening nutrient runoff in collaboration at farm-edges.          

The National Algae Association demonstrates leadership in reducing nutrient runoff at non-point sources entering waterways and algae bloom and HAB reduction on waterbodies to promote positive steps towards restoring the health and wellbeing of our waterways amd waterbodies. Nutrient runoff, warmer temperatures and increased sunlight create the ideal conditions for algae bloom growth in lakes and coastlines, which harm water quality. Algae blooms and HABs consume oxygen, endangering fish and other aquatic organisms. They can also release toxins, making the water  unsafe for humans, animals and affect drinking water. 

Eutrophication and Algal Blooms

Phosphorus is a primary nutrient that promotes plant growth. However, an excess of phosphorus in lakes can lead to eutrophication, a process where water bodies receive excess nutrients that stimulate excessive plant growth such as algae and other aquatic plants. This can lead to harmful algal blooms, which can produce toxins harmful to aquatic life, humans, and animals. Algal blooms also block sunlight from reaching other plants and organisms, causing them to die and decompose. 

Depletion of Dissolved Oxygen

As these algae and plants die and decompose, decomposition processes consume dissolved oxygen in the water. The decrease in dissolved oxygen can cause other aquatic organisms like fish and zooplankton to die, leading to a dead zone where little life can survive.

Impact on Water Quality and Safety

Algae blooms associated with high phosphorus levels cam have significant impacts on water quality making it unsuitable for drinking water or recreational activities. Some harmful algae blooms produce toxins that rea dangerous if ingested and can cause skin and eye irritation on contact. 
Economic Implications
The implications of poor water quality and harmful algal blooms extend to the economic realm as well. Impacted water bodies can lead to the loss of revenue from recreational activities such as fishing, boating, and swimming. Furthermore, treating water affected by algal blooms for safe human consumption can be costly. (LG Sonic)


                     Highly promoted ag microbes are not keeping N+P longer in soils after heavy rainfalls and mega storms.                          They are being washed away.   Wetlands are limited on amounts of nutrients they can absorb before entering waterways.      


After $2.5 billion spent on algae research 80 years ago, the algae industry moved forward with private investment. No longer spending  time on restrictive government research grants, but interested in advancing into commercialization and deployment. There is a huge learning curve between what takes place in a lab and scaling-up  algae bloom and HAB remediation technologies that do no harm.  We have found it takes a variety of research and business disciplines in collaboration to be successful in our industry. The algae industry has fast-tract commercialization through new enhancements to existing algae bloom and HAB  remediation technologies that are scalable, economicaly feasible that can be deployed today! NAA facilitates collaboration between algae research, private industry and the investment community to help build the algae industry a projected $3.4 billion dollar industry. (Pikes Research)

Where Nutrient Pollution Occurs | US EPA  –

The BAD Algae: Algae blooms effect fishing, swimming, tourism, real estate values. local businesses and are a health risk. Harmful algal blooms (HABs) are a growing concern across the nation and globally. These blooms can produce toxins that pose significant risks to both human health and aquatic ecosystems. Learn about the contributing factors that contribute to the formation of harmful algal blooms and the conditions that foster their growth. Learn about efforts to reduce nutrient runoff at non-point sources entering waterways, track and detect harmful algal blooms in lakes and coastlines from streams, rivers and waterways that effect our waterways on a daily basis. 

NAA brings together both sides of our industry to help reduce nutrient runoff, reduce harmful algae blooms on lakes and coastlines and tur nutrient runoff effluents into algae biofertilizer back to the land. A potential win-win-win! 

Source: Stefan Pohl
Phosphorus is an important nutrient, but too much of it in lakes can diminish water quality and lead to eutrophication, resulting in harmful algal blooms and dead zones. Unfortunately, ag microbes cannot stay in the soil after heavy rainfalls and wetland have limitations. Massive amounts of nutrient runoff N+P enter at non-point sources enter waterways creating harmful algae blooms on lakes and coastlines. They worsen every year affecting fishing swimming, tourism, real estate values, local economies and are health risk to humans and animals. Since algae blooms and HAB remediation alone is a temporary NAA takes a holistic approach from source to bloom approach.
“Heavy rains and melting snows washed massive amounts of nutrients – particularly nitrogen and phosphorus – from lawns, sewage treatment plants, farm land and other sources along the Mississippi River into the Gulf of Mexico,” according to the Nature Conservancy. “Once in the Gulf, these nutrients, which are required for plant and crop growth, trigger algae blooms that choke off oxygen in water and make it difficult, if not impossible, for marine life to survive.”      
According to the US EPA, 68% of Americans rely on surface water (lakes, reservoirs, rivers, streams) for their drinking water supply. The USEPA 2012 National Lakes Assessment found that 39% of lakes sampled had microcystin, an increase of 9.5% over the 2007 survey. Although microcystin and other algae toxins (anatoxin, saxitoxin, cylindrospermopsin, etc.) are not currently regulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act, they are on EPA’s Contaminant Candidate List and are listed in the Fourth Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR4), which bodes well for future regulation. 



Edge-of-Field Nutrient Runoff Capture, Recycling ad Repurposing Pilot Tests 

Edge-of-field runoff drainage sampling.

                                                                Filtering nutrients out of water BEFORE they drain into waterways                                                                  and using them to grow algae biofertilizer back to the farmland. 

                                            Measure nutrient runoff reduction entering waterways.                                          –


                          Algae Bloom and HAB Remediation, Capture, Removal, Recycling Clean water Back to Waterbodies                             and On-Shore Repurposing Pilot Tests

nutrient removal, phosphorus removal, algae blooms, ammonia removal, and nonpoint nutrient contamination